The Dynamics of Religious Leadership and Governance in Some Charismatic Churches In Ghana 1978-2017

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dc.contributor.author Esubonteng, J.G.
dc.date.accessioned 2019-05-30T13:06:36Z
dc.date.available 2019-05-30T13:06:36Z
dc.date.issued 2018-07
dc.identifier.uri http://ugspace.ug.edu.gh/handle/123456789/30393
dc.description PhD. en_US
dc.description.abstract This research examined the nature of leadership in Charismatic Churches in Ghana, the influence of this leadership on governance and the resultant dynamics as these churches grew numerically and spread geographically over time. Among others, the complementary roles of Charismatic Church members to their leaders during the dynamics of leadership and governance were discussed. In addition, how leaders of Charismatic Churches developed their organisational and administrative systems in the course of their growth was studied. Furthermore, the research explored how the power and authority of leaders employed in organisational development were linked to and reinforced by governance strategies. It similarly, investigated how the dynamics of governance operated in Charismatic Churches through the instruments of rules, processes and structures. Finally, this work assessed the impact of the dynamics of leadership and governance on members of Charismatic churches, their churches and the public. Governance it must be noted, was considered mostly within the recently introduced Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) paradigm, which evaluates governance actions by their effectiveness and from the perspective of the governed. An ethnographical methodology was employed in studying three churches namely, International Central Gospel Church (ICGC), Victory Bible Church International (VBCI) and Lighthouse Chapel International (LCI), which became the United Denomination Lighthouse Group of Churches (UDLOGC) during the course of this research in 2017. Using a metaphoric conceptualisation, these three churches were considered as clans within a single Pentecostal-charismatic anthropological community. The key ingredients for data gathering were participant observation. Then various types of interviews, discussions and conversation were held within different hierarchical levels of church membership. In addition, some preaching messages and devotional books of Charismatic Church founders were examined. Regular notes were taken during data collection and the resultant data interpreted. Max Weber’s postulations on charisma were employed as the theoretical framework. As part of the first wave of Charismatic Churches in Ghana each church was in the process of routinising. The research catchment area was principally the Greater Accra Region. Additional visits were made to churches in Kumasi, Cape Coast and Takoradi as part of the data gathering process. The research findings indicate that Charismatic Church founders first emerged as church leaders based on the call they claim they had received from God. This call was selflegitimated by the presence of charisma or an anointing, as Sohm first described it, and later adapted by Weber. The Church founders usually started with small congregation with few adherents by setting up organisations without any guarantees of success. It was a leap into the unknown. Critically, Charismatic Church founders operated through entrepreneurial means and their personalities marked the churches. Each founder of a Charismatic Church had a unique personality and area of ministerial emphasis indicating that different ethical and ministerial emphases raised different Charismatic Churches. While Otabil has stressed on leadership as a means to change the world, Heward-Mills has depended on evangelism and loyalty. Tackie-Yarboi, emphasizes the fulfilment of purpose within the New Testament church as a means of producing God’s purpose and prosperity. The process of leadership development associated with church growth in Charismatic Churches is one that fundamentally involves a followership who ultimately become church members. Followers of Charismatic Church leaders are opinionated individuals whose hard work, sacrifices, innovations and efforts bring character and growth to their church organisations. Here, at least four types of followership relationships can be identified. Charismatic Church members are attracted to and seek leadership charisma manifestation as part of their regular experiences. Through personal prayer, impartation and special relationships such as sonship, church members can obtain their own versions of charisma, which is a precursor to leadership. Charismatic Church founders and members can only function as described above within given systems of governance as self-care. The first steps to governance are the processes of legal registration and regular members’ legitimation assessment of their leaders. Then charismatic Church leaders and members corporately use spiritual and secular power to set up governance systems through delegation and devolution of responsibilities and authority. As governance bureaucratic systems begin to work in these Churches, they reinforce leadership influence, stature, reach, etc., of the founder and his associates. Charismatic Church governance which emphasised how churches cared for themselves as conceptualised within the recent NGO usage was considered within three sub themes. These were the rules employed, processes engaged and the structures (RSP) erected by the churches as a way of caring for themselves. Through these Charismatic Churches were making and inventing traditions as well as creating internal church cultures, which brings predictability and uniformity. Through the changing tenors of leadership and governance dynamics, individuals within churches have been cared for by their churches. Following on, ICGC, VBCI and LCI have metamorphosed from being single independent churches into denominations, which is a further example of good governance. In addition, these Charismatic denominations have reached out to help the public outside their churches in the areas of education, health, and other social services. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher University of Ghana en_US
dc.subject Religious Leadership en_US
dc.subject Governance en_US
dc.subject Charismatic Churches en_US
dc.subject Ghana en_US
dc.title The Dynamics of Religious Leadership and Governance in Some Charismatic Churches In Ghana 1978-2017 en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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